EYAL – Southend

Scorching heat raises the standards

Summer arrived at last for the third round of the EYAL meet held at Garon Park in Southend on Sunday 5 June. Over 50 Colchester Harriers youngsters held their heads high to take third place against fierce competition, inching ahead of the host Club.

The scorching temperatures brought with it a bundle of Personal Best performances including a pair of National Standards for two of Harrier’s top sprinters and a top ten national relay time.

Full points were awarded to Rebecca Jeggo who achieved yet another win and a PB in her U17 Women’s 200m claiming with it an impressive National Standard of 25.0s. This places her in the top rankings in the country and will add confidence ahead of the Essex Schools selection meet in Chelmsford on Saturday 11 June. In the U17 men’s equivalent, Callum Mckay held form to the line for a PB of 22.9s and with it a qualifying time for the National U17 Championships in August. Team mate Charlie Dobson, took first in his 200m heat with an impressive return to form following injury to run a PB of 23s, missing the qualifying time by just one tenth of a second.

Sprint newcomer Ronnie Oliver has set the bar high in just his second meet as an U15 for the club, gaining full marks in his 100m which took him below the 12 s bar to 11.9s and 200m of 24.7s. Daniel Jones, also back from injury, looked refreshed and determined to claim three Pb’s throughout the day including a clear win in the U15 Boys 300m in a time of 39.8s , as well as throwing new distances in both Shot Putt (6.65m) and Discus (12.29m).

Endurance runners and training partners Max Caulfield and Danny Millward provided excitement as they battled it out in the U15 boys 1500m, with Millward showing strength at the end to claim a time of 4:35.0s taking first and full marks as the B string runner with Caulfield just .9 s behind him to claim full marks as the first A string runner home.

U13 Matthew Wisdom stepped up for the club to compete in 100m taking 5th place and a new PB , 800m claiming a good third in a time of 2:44.7,  and High Jump where he was joined by newcomer Luke Verela. Wisdom took the top spot with a jump of 1.30m.  Graig Anya-Joseph stepped out of his comfort zone to compete in the Long Jump, but true to form he earned top marks for the club and a PB with a jump of 5.10m.

Gaining valuable team points from the girls were Milly Presland who was placed second in the U13 1500m in a time of 5:30.1, Zion Ateba in just her second competition for the club is already showing promise in High Jump and Hurdling, claiming second with a jump of 1.30m equalling her PB, however a bad fall hindered her progression further but that did not stop this plucky young athlete from competing later in the 200m.

In the U15’s Eleanor Hopgood took 5th place in the 100m but gained a massive PB to run 13.4s, taking .7 off her previous best. Hurdler Katie Rice improves with each race she enters, showing good technique she claimed fourth place and a PB on 13.5s. In the B string Lauren Strutt improved her time to 14.5s and in the Shot Putt took second place adding almost a meter onto her PB.  Again in the field events Aliyah Soames continues to impress with her ever improving Hammer (22.12m) and Javelin (27.21m) throws, claiming third and second place respectively and valuable points for the Harriers.

Second year U15 Lily Waterson knocked an incredible 8 seconds off her previous best 800m to now reach 2.48.1 placing fifth in the B string.

16 year old Millie Belbin saved the best jump till last to take second place in the U17 women’s Triple Jump and increased her PB by a fraction under half a meter to clear 10.68m.  Back on the track it was Emma Livingstone adding points by claiming second in the 800m (2:31.6s) as did Hannah Watson in 1500m with a time of 5:08.2s.

Ending a long, hot day were the 4 x100m relays. With teams in the U13 girls, (finishing 5th in 63.7s)  U15 girls (finishing 4th in 54.7s) , U15 boys and 17 men.  U15 men stormed through to win in convincing fashion and giving plenty of scope to become county champions later in the season with a time of 49.9s. But it was the last race of the day that got heart rates fluttering.

With a talented team consisting of Callum Mckay, Charlie Dobson, Jake Young and Mufaro Shava, the U17 men went into the 4 x100m relay with a good chance of gaining a first place; however from the start it was clear this quad were out to prove a point.  Despite this being their first time together,  smooth change overs ensured Shava ducked over the line to stop the clock on 44.8s and set a new club record and a time that sets this team in the top ten relay teams in the country (at time of writing). Head Coach Paul Young, now needs to consider whether to enter them into the National relay championships later in the year.

PBs were achieved by: Boys U13 Tommy Falco debut for club 200m and  800m, Luke Varela debut for club High Jump, Long Jump &. Boys U15 Henry Lawes 200m, Marcus Holmes and Sam Hoffman 800m, Finn O’Reilly High Jump, 300m and Javelin (a 10m pb!), Archie French 300m.  U17 Men Ben Halls 400m, Joe Boden  1500m, Jordan Fester Javelin.  Girls U13 Georgina Smith 100m,  Mya Obwoya 100m, 200m and Shot, Lilly Upton 100m & 200m, Olivia Simon 200m Madeleine Clayden 800m & High Jump, Grace Gardiner  Long Jump, Imogen Hayhurst 800m, Maisie Waterson 1500m & Discus, Mia Farrell Shot. U15 Girls Rachel Hoddell 75 M Hurdles & 200m, Eleanor Hopgood 100m, Rhianne Boatswain 100m & 200m, Isabella Minder 100m & 200m, Savannah Harrison 300m & Shot Putt, Amelia Dean Long Jump, Alexandra Ross Discus. U17 Women Francesca Harley 200m & Discus, Hannah Watson 1500m & Discus, Rebecca Jeggo Javelin.